SCHOOL RECALLS BIGHEARTED ALBERT MARTIN

Isaac Coates and Garret Sickels reflect on their classmate and teammate Albert Martin, who died suddenly Monday. (Photo by Rebecca Desfosse. Click to enlarge)

By REBECCA DESFOSSE

Moving through the crowded hallways at Red Bank Regional, on the football field or in the paint on the school’s basketball court, Albert Martin cut an imposing figure.

In reality, though, he was six-foot-four and 220 pounds of “teddy bear,” a young man “just coming into his own” as a student and athlete, one with a future full of promise, his fellow students, coaches and others recalled Tuesday.

Less than 24 hours after collapsing during a basketball scrimmage, tearful members of the school community struggled to come to terms with the Red Bank 17-year-old’s sudden and thus-far-unexplained death.

Read More »

REMEMBERING RIYADHNA

A crowd of hundreds applauded a performance of “The Greatest Love of All” at a candlelight vigil in memory of Riyadhna Farrow. (Photos by Stacie Fanelli. Click to enlarge.)

By STACIE FANELLI

Dozens of loving messages honoring Riyadhna Farrow, known to some as “RiRi,” were written on the door of her Red Bank home Friday night as hundreds gathered there for a vigil in her memory.

The 18-year-old Red Bank Regional High School senior died suddenly last Monday.

The Count the Children Movement organized the event for friends, packed tight in a parking lot at the Montgomery Terrace apartment complex, to share their fondest memories of Farrow and for borough, school and church administrators to remind those closest to her of Red Bank’s support.

Read More »

BABY BUCS LEARN TO BLOCK


9:34 a.m. Red Bank Pop Warner football commissioner Steve  Turner gives future Buccaneers a lesson in proper stance and blocking techniques.

At the “Be a Buc” football camp, run at Red Bank Regional, current members of the RBR football team assist school and league coaches in training the younger players. (Video and photo by Stacie Fanelli)

Read More »

ACCIDENT DEMO DRIVES HOME SAFETY LESSON

RBR students look on as emergency personnel perform an extrication of a ‘victim’ trapped in a vehicle. Below, Joy Jones displays a portrait of her son Steven as she speaks to students about his death at the hands of his drunk best friend. (Photos by Stacie Fanelli. Click to enlarge)

By STACIE FANELLI

Little Silver police  were the first on the scene Friday morning at Red Bank Regional, where three cars lay smashed on the pavement. Sirens blaring, at least a dozen more emergency vehicles lined up in front of the school minutes later.

No one was hurt. In fact, the entire senior class stood around the “crash” site, struggling to hold back laughter when a drunken driver stumbled dramatically out of the first vehicle.

Read More »

WALKING OVERNIGHT AGAINST CANCER

Hundreds of walkers took to the track at Red Bank Regional from Friday afternoon until Saturday morning in support of finding a cure for cancer. Social studies teacher April Chichelo led a luminaria ceremony, famously the most solemn and often emotional part of the American Cancer Society’s annual Relay for Life. (Photos and video by Stacie Fanelli)

Read More »

R-FH TOPS RBR IN RIDGE ROAD RIVALRY

Delores Martin, mother of point guard Asim Jules, cheers on Red Bank Regional in its NJSIAA Central Jersey Group II showdown against Rumson-Fair Haven Tuesday night.

Bulldog senior JJ Conklin scored a career-high 22 points as R-FH won at home, 47-39, and advanced to the second round of state playoffs at Ewing Thursday night. (Photos by Stacie Fanelli. Click to enlarge)

RBR CHOIR KNOWS WHAT LOVE IS, LIVE

The Red Bank Regional HS Choir made a guest appearance onstage with Foreigner at the sold-out Count Basie Theatre Wednesday night, joining lead singer Kelly Hansen and the band for their classic “I Want to Know What Love Is.” Check it out.

WHAT WE’RE HEARING 1

Water main break on Ocean Avenue, Sea Bright, near MerriMakers…

Large tree down at Sycamore and Silverbrook in Shrewsbury…

Sea Bright police having “serious radio problems.”

Tree down, Pearl and Central, Red Bank…

RBR DANCE STUDENT INJURED IN BEATING

anthonytiedeman3By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

A recent Red Bank Regional graduate who was accepted to Julliard‘s prestigious dance program was badly injured in an assault Sunday night, Red Bank police said.

Police are still pursuing the assailants who beat up Anthony Tiedeman, right, and sent him to the hospital with a broken jaw and eye, mouth and nose injuries, said Captain Darren McConnell.

The assault occurred after a party on Spring Street Sunday. RBR students graduated Friday, and McConnell said the party had “something to do with kids,” but wasn’t sure if it was a graduation party.

“I don’t know if it was all RBR kids, but primarily RBR kids,” involved in the beating, he said.

Read More »

‘CRASH’ SENDS MESSAGE IN GORY DETAIL

rbr-mock2Local volunteers ready a mock patient to be removed from a staged car crash and transported via a helicopter. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

With red lights flashing, power tools humming, glass shattered into crystal rocks on the pavement and twisted metal — what just minutes prior had been car roofs and doors —  tossed to the side, the jaws slowly lowered and the cell phones were pointed in ‘capture’ mode.

After firefighters muscled the jaws of life to tear aluminum and carbon fiber from two cars that had become cages to its passengers, EMS volunteers broke out the neck braces and popped the stretchers into position, ready to take away the victims of a head-on collision Friday morning.

Then the hearse arrived, and somebody was being zipped into a white body bag.

This high school tradition, a morbid mise en scene intended to spring the neck hair of prom-going seniors, couldn’t get more real short of somebody’s heart actually stopping.

Read More »

WALKING THE SOGGY WALK FOR A CAUSE

Students at Red Bank Regional held their annual Relay for Life fundraiser for cancer research Friday night into Saturday morning. redbankgreen photog Peter Linder was there to document the smiles and miles on that soggy overnight.

To enlarge the photo display, start it, then click the embiggen symbol in the lower right corner. To return to redbankgreen, hit your escape key.

DONE GOOD: WALK, RUN, PUTT, CUT ‘N STRUT

relayforlife2009It’s Friday night lights as Relay for Life returns to RBR this weekend. (File photo. Click to enlarge)

donegoodlogoCancer, as they say, never sleeps — and if you’re among the many thousands of people who’ve spent sleepless nights out of concern for a loved one who’s battling cancer, the American Cancer Society has a constructive, even celebratory, way to “walk the walk” — even in those darkest-before-the-dawn hours.

On Friday evening, May 20, the first of two local events in the ACS Relay for Life campaign commences on the outdoor track at Red Bank Regional High School, when close to 600 fundraising volunteers will gather into teams to run, walk and “celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and fight back against the disease.” The up-all-night benefit takes place under the lights between the hours of 5 p.m. Friday and 7 a.m. Saturday — and there’s still time to register, sponsor or participate in the event, by taking it right here.

Check here as well for info about the June 17 Relay for Life event at Mater Dei High School in Middletown — and turn the pixelated page for more Done Good doings in the days and nights to come.

Read More »

FOR RBR PHOTOGS, MAJOR EXPOSURE

margotfosterAmong the photos featured in the Red Bank Regional VPA Senior Art Show are THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN YOU AND ME by Margot Foster of Middletown and DOUBLE TAKE by Amanda Sullivan of Little Silver, below. (Click to enlarge)

According to Red Bank Regional High School faculty member Dawn Lisko, the senior photography majors in her Visual and Performing Art Academy program “have worked rigorously over the past four years.”

amanda-sullivanHow rigorously? In an age when even the most accomplished professional photographers have abandoned film, scrapped their developer equipment and turned their darkrooms back into half-baths and wine cellars, the VPA students learned how to develop and print film negatives the old fashioned way — this in addition to training in the most hypercurrent digital shooting and Photoshopping techniques.

On the evening of Thursday, May 12, the rigors of the shutterbug lifestyle will pay dividends for nine of the RBR photography majors, when the VPA Senior Art Show spotlights the best of the students’ work in an exhibit that opens at Borough Hall in Little Silver.

Read More »

RBR STUDENT DANCES HIS WAY INTO JULLIARD

By DUSTIN RACIOPPIanthonytiedeman3

The chances were about as good as getting struck by lightning, but a Red Bank Regional senior has made his way to one of the country’s most prestigious performing arts schools.

Anthony Tiedeman, right, has been accepted to Julliard, a highly sought-after school that has less than a five-percent acceptance rate.

After a three-round audition process, the school selected Tiedeman and 25 others from a group of 560 applicants, a release from RBR said.

Read More »

RBR TO INTRO BUDGET, NEW SUPERINTENDENT

mr-s3By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Jim Stefankiewicz, right, will waste no time getting back down to business at Red Bank Regional.

Even though he won’t officially step in as the high school’s superintendent until April 1, he’ll re-introduce himself — and the 2011-’12 budget — to the public a couple of days prior.

The former principal and to-be school chief will hold a meet-and-greet next Wednesday, then take part in the district’s 2011-12 budget presentation.

Read More »

RBR NAMES EX-PRINCIPAL AS NEW SUPER

mr-s1By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Jim Stefankiewicz (right) is returning for Act II at Red Bank Regional High School, this time to take the reins as superintendent.

Stefankiewicz, RBR’s former principal, was appointed Wednesday night as superintendent, filling a gap left by Howard Lucks, who left the post earlier this month to tend to his ailing wife.

Former superintendent Edward Westervelt will keep Lucks’s seat warm until Stefankiewicz, who is currently assistant superintendent for the Middletown school district, steps into the new role sometime in April.

Read More »

WESTERVELT BACK AT RBR AS INTERIM CHIEF

dr1By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

As Red Bank Regional‘s school board continues to search for a replacement for Superintendent Howard Lucks, right, a familiar face will step back into the main office.

Edward Westervelt, whom Lucks replaced last year, will resume superintendent duties on an interim basis when Lucks leaves the school on February 1, the district announced Thursday.

“Dr. Westervelt was just here last year, so the board thought it would be a smooth transition rather than bringing an interim superintendent who didn’t have much experience,” said Business Administrator Tina Galvao.

Read More »

FORMER RBFD CHIEF CARHART PASSES AWAY

carhartA plaque outside the Navesink Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1’s building on Mechanic Street announces the death of Calvin Carhart, who had been the oldest living past chief. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Calvin Carhart, a public servant and volunteer since graduating high school and who had been Red Bank’s oldest living former fire chief, died Thursday at the age of 89.

The cause was cancer, his wife of 67 years, Ada, said.

“It’s a big loss for the department,” said Chief Alan Soden. “It’s a big thing.”

Read More »

ELEVENTH-HOUR REMEMBRANCE

vets-111110

rbr-choir-111110

At the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, Red Bank schoolchildren, elected officials and civic groups gathered at Red Bank’s war memorial on Monmouth Street to pay honor to American war veterans. Among the participants were members of the Red Bank Regional High School Choir, right. (Click to enlarge)

LUCKS LEAVING RBR AFTER ONE YEAR

drBy DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Howard Lucks, who came to Red Bank Regional around this time last year as superintendent, is leaving the district because of family medical problems, he confirmed today.

He informed the school board Monday night that he will resign from the position as soon as a replacement is hired.

Read More »

MIDDLE SCHOOL LEADS THE WAY

pltwRed Bank Middle School teacher Elizabeth Willoughby oversees students doing research in a new program called Project Lead the Way. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Reading from a textbook and writing down answers on a test are all well and good, but at Red Bank Middle School, they’re just two ways to acquaint students hands-on with concepts in math, science and more.

That’s where Project Lead the Way, a national initiative to spark “ingenuity, creativity and innovation” within students, comes in.

“It’s really trying to mold and influence this generation and fill a gap that’s been left in America,” said Chris Ippolito, one of two teachers involved in the program. “This is like a supplement to math, science, engineering, et cetera.”

Read More »

DAL PRA: I’M STAYING

Del Pra2Louis Dal Pra won’t be leaving his job as RBR’s athletic director after all.

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

When redbankgreen called Louis ‘Del’ Dal Pra‘s office late Friday morning, he didn’t have to wait for the question to be asked. He knew the reason for the call, and got right to it.

“I’m back,” he said, confirming the rumors that he decided to stay put as Red Bank Regional‘s athletic director. “It’s official.”

Read More »

TAILGATING FOR A WORTHY CAUSE

bbq3bbq2Football fans gathered at Red Bank Regional Saturday afternoon for a pre-game barbecue that raised funds for The Source, the in-school program that offers counseling, tutoring, dental care and other services to students. Afterward, Raritan High beat RBR 35-34 in double OT. The Asbury Park Press has a full report on the game. (Photos by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

RBR TRIPS ON NEW FIELD IN HOME OPENER

rbr-puntA Matawan defender goes for a block on a punt by Red Bank Regional at Count Basie Field Thursday night. Below, fans cheering the Bucs. (Photos by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

rbr-fans

The outcome, from the local perspective, wasn’t desired, with the home team falling, 28-7, to the visiting Matawan Huskies.

But the Red Bank Regional Buccaneers played their first game under the lights on the new artificial field at Count Basie Field Thursday night to an enthusiastic and appreciative crowd that waited out a rain delay for kickoff.

Read More »

DAL PRA MAKING AN EARLY EXIT FROM RBR

dal-praRBR athletic director Lou “Del” Dal Pra is leaving in October. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Louis “Del” Dal Pra came to Red Bank Regional with a 20-year plan. He made it to two and change.

The high school’s vaunted athletic director is leaving at the end of October to take a teaching job at Raritan High School in Hazlet, putting school leadership on the hunt for a replacement who can fill the big hole Dal Pra will leave.

“Del’s a big loss because he’s a great community guy,” principal Risa Clay said. “People are devastated.”

Read More »